Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry has signed a Memorandum of Understanding, MoU, with Hamburg Chamber of Commerce to increase cooperation and promote strategic partnerships to increase trade exchange which was valued at 6.3 billion euros between Hamburg and the UAE in 2015.
The MoU was signed during the 5th Dubai Hamburg Business Forum organised in Dubai by Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry on March 22nd, 2016, in the presence of Majid Al Ghurair, Chairman of Dubai Chamber, Hamad Buamim, President and CEO of Dubai Chamber, and Fritz Horst Melsheimer, President of Hamburg Chamber of Commerce.
The MoU expressed the commitment of both the institutions to promote the Dubai Hamburg Business Forum and actively work together to fulfil its aims in the coming years. Under the MoU, both institutions agreed to increase the exchange of students and faculty between University of Dubai, operating under the umbrella of the Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Hamburg School of Business Administration, HSBA, in the years to come. In addition, HSBA intends to implement a one-week study trip to Dubai within the scope of its EMBA programme and with the aim to interact with Dubai-based companies and possibly students and faculty from the University of Dubai.
The MoU will enable Dubai Chamber and Hamburg Chamber of Commerce to grant each other assistance in terms of recommending persons of suitable experience and integrity to be considered for appointment as arbitrators. The signatories will mutually assist their partners in obtaining information, publications and advise on national arbitration laws.
In view of the increasing business relations between Hamburg and Dubai in the healthcare sector in the last few years, the MoU will facilitate future joint initiatives and cooperation in the healthcare sector between both regions. Under the MoU, Dubai Chamber and Hamburg Chamber of Commerce agreed to organize an annual meeting between companies represented by the two institutions.
The two Chambers committed to further intensify cooperation in the maritime sector. Under the terms of the MoU, Dubai Chamber agreed to continue Dubai’s presence during SMM Hamburg, the leading international maritime trade fair.
The two Chambers also agreed to enhance cooperation and joint ventures between member companies on Dubai Expo 2020. Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, in cooperation with the local cluster organisation, Logistics Initiative Hamburg, will promote Hamburg companies’ experience, particularly in the field of sustainable logistical structures and processes within the framework of the Expo 2020.
In his opening address on the occasion, Majid Al Ghurair commended the relationship between Dubai Chamber and Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, saying that the partnership between the two entities has grown stronger since it began nine years ago.
Majid Al Ghurair urged new industries to evolve, existing ones to change and adjust mind sets to effectively make use of the massive business opportunities and potential for growth offered by the Internet of Things, IoT.
"Dubai aims to spearhead regional development by transforming itself into a Smart City, which is a continuing step in the advancement of e-Government under the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, UAE Vice-President and Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai, to evolve Dubai as the world’s Smartest City by 2017 and the happiest city on earth," Al Ghurair said.
"Over the last 14 years, the Dubai government has managed to establish a digital platform which efficiently provides e-services to businesses and government departments, and which has acted as a springboard for Dubai to lead the Smart City initiative," Al Ghurair added.
He pointed out, "Online connectivity has created change, and could further influence the sectors that were traditionally identified as offering maximum business opportunities for companies from Dubai and Hamburg."
Hamad Buamim said that innovation is a key driver of the Dubai economy, inspired by the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to promote innovation in all sectors. Buamim stressed the importance of innovation, pointing to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed’s observation that "Innovation today is not an option but a necessity".
He said it is important to benefit from new technology to make people’s life easier in light of global reports which indicate that the world will have 26 billion internet-connected devices by 2020.
Buamim pointed out that as a major innovation hub, Dubai is spearheading innovation and connectivity in every area of activity to make people’s life easier.
"Over the last 14 years, the Dubai government has managed to establish a digital platform which efficiently provides e-services to individuals, businesses and government departments, providing a springboard for Dubai to lead its Smart City initiative. Over the next 5 to 10 years, Dubai is expected to be one of the smartest cities in the world. Dubai is set to achieve a new revolution of integrating government services with the ‘Internet of Things’, thus making government services easily accessible to every resident in the city," he added.
Buamim identified Logistics, Energy, Urban Living, and Healthcare as four smart sectors in Dubai that are being transformed by the Internet of Things, opening up wide horizons for new kinds of smart services to improve lifestyles and strengthen sustainability and energy saving practices.
Buamim pointed out that Dubai’s smart initiatives in key sectors offer numerous potential business opportunities to promote cooperation between Dubai and Hamburg, and the Internet of Things could help broaden these prospects to include more areas such as education, smart homes, manufacturing, and retail.
Addressing the forum, Fritz Horst Melsheimer, President of Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, said that the fast pace of digitalisation of the economy requires businesses to embrace and shape this process to ensure their competitiveness in the changing scenario.
"We are very keen on learning about the processes the companies and our cities have undergone in order to maximise the benefits of digitalisation, as well as how they cope with the challenges of the Internet of Things in areas like IT security," Melsheimer said.
Expressing keen interest in getting actively involved in Expo 2020 in Dubai, Melsheimer said, "Expo 2020 offers the greatest opportunity for Dubai to showcase its excellence as a global infrastructure, high tech and innovation hub, and one of the most popular tourist destinations across the globe."
During his speech, Prof. Dr. Hans-Jorg Schmidt-Trenz, Chief Executive Officer, Hamburg Chamber of Commerce, said that there are 340 Hamburg-based companies with business activities in UAE, and the UAE was ranked the 5th biggest trading partner for Hamburg in 2015.
During a session on the topic, ‘Overview of Expo 2020’, Najeeb Mohammed Al-Ali, Senior Vice President - Project Management Office, Expo 2020, linked the Great Expos of the past with the UAE’s vision for the future. The session explored the theme and subthemes of Expo 2020, and its ambitions for operational excellence. It also looked at engagement efforts in addition to available opportunities to collaborate with Expo.
A panel discussion on Smart Energy was participated in by Ahmad Bin Shafar, CEO of Empower, Marwan Abdulaziz Janahi, Executive Director of Dubai Science Park, Prof. Dr.-Ing. Rudiger Siechau, Managing Director, Stadtreinigung Hamburg, and Klaus Schweininger, Head of Finance at TRIMET Aluminium SE, Germany. The session discussed engagement opportunities for companies in Dubai and Hamburg in achieving sustainable and diversified energy supply in the background of Dubai’s Integrated Energy Strategy 2030 and Hamburg’s ‘New 4.0’ Industry initiative.
The 5th Dubai Hamburg Business Forum was held under the theme, ‘The Internet of Things – Innovation to Connect’, featuring a series of interactive sessions highlighting the importance of the digitisation of economies, and the success achieved by Dubai in making use of smart platforms to offer efficient services for businesses.
The forum called for a shift in priorities to tap into the immense business opportunities offered by the Internet of Things as the event brought together leading organisations from Dubai and Germany to explore new horizons for fruitful cooperation between the business communities of Dubai and Hamburg.
Since its launch in 2007, the Dubai Hamburg Business Forum has become an ideal platform for joint cooperation and partnership for the business communities of both cities and has led to successful economic cooperation in various sectors by investors of both sides.
The Hamburg Metropolitan Region is one of Germany’s strongest economic regions and a central trading hub for Northern Europe. The port of Hamburg is one of the world’s largest container ports and is an important growth engine for the region. It takes the leading role in Germany in such industries as aviation, logistics, IT, renewable energies and media, while also playing a major global role. Hamburg is the third largest site for the aviation industry worldwide, with major players Airbus and Lufthansa Technik operating large facilities, and more than 30,000 employees in the industry.